New York, 1863.
Somebody's Luggage'. [New York: 1863].
Miniature photographic album locket, in the shape a a suitcase. (7/8 x 3/4 inch; 24 x 20 mm). Gilt brass. With the words "Somebody's Luggage" stamped on the front. With a brass clasp to keep it closed. Inside six brass leaves hinged in a concertina fold. Each leaf with an albumen-print portrait on either side, within an oval frame. A total of twelve portraits. Some very minor tarnishing, else about fine.
Although originally produced as a souvenir for the wedding of the most famous little people of the time, Tom Thumb and Lavinia Warren, with the twelve photos being portraits of the bride, groom and wedding party; this particular copy has been repurposed to hold photographs of other distinguished people of the era. The portraits are of unknown individuals, but include a man in military dress, a woman with child and several other figures of similar distinction. The only identified photo is of Italian general Giuseppe Garibaldi.
"This locket was produced as a commercial souvenir of the lavish wedding in New York at the Grace Episcopal Church on 10 February 1863 of 'General' Tom Thumb and Lavinia Warren. Born Charles Sherwood Stratton in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in 1838, Tom Thumb was 'discovered' at four years old by the American showman P.T. Barnum. Barnum trained him to sing and dance, exhibited him at his American Museum in New York and marketed him successfully throughout America and Europe. Tom Thumb's wedding and reception at the Metropolitan Hotel received massive press coverage and the couple were given lavish gifts from socially prominent New Yorkers. Barnum marketed several souvenirs of the occasion including this locket." (Victoria and Albert Museum).